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TRIESTE SCIENCE+FICTION 2019

Review: Time Perspectives

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- This first work by the Neapolitan director now residing in London Ciro Sorrentino is a small-scale Back to the Future set in the Italian countryside and featuring a Vespa in the place of the DeLorean

Review: Time Perspectives
Sam Gittins en Time Perspectives

Time Perspectives is a science fiction experiment within a creative experiment. This first work by the Neapolitan residing in London Ciro Sorrentino, selected in the “Spazio Italia” section of the Trieste Science+Fiction Festival, is a classic time travel film, set to a very low budget (which is no unusual thing in the independent sci-fi landscape). What does make it special is the setting – a splendid Basilicata hilltop town - and the fact that it’s shot entirely in English, and is thereby intended for a more international audience. But the most peculiar thing is that Sorrentino, who took editing and visual effects in hand, in addition to the film’s direction and screenplay, also wanted Time Perspectives to be a comedy rather than a thriller featuring a crazy scientist; something more along the lines of a small-scale, provincial Back to the Future, with a Vespa 50cc in the place of a DeLorean.

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Leading the cast is young British talent Sam Gittins (who was rewarded both at London’s FrightFest and here in Trieste last year for his performance in Johnny Kevorkian’s sci-fi-horror work Await Further Instructions [+see also:
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). In Time Perspectives, Gittins plays Ricky Farina, a young scientist waiting to take up his new role as a university assistant in London, who has travelled to the south of Italy to help his dad Riccardo (Mino Sferra) carry out an ambitious experiment which should prove the veracity of Nikola Tesla’s theories on ether, an energy which, in his opinion, pervades the entire universe (unfortunately, Albert Einstein, who’s working at the same time as the Croatian inventor, upsets the apple cart with his theory of relativity). Doctor Farina’s laboratory is located in the old barn of a country farm and the experiment soon results in a time paradox of sorts, where we find three different versions of Ricky co-existing, chasing one another on Vespas and travelling 65 minutes back in time, alongside two little pigs named Chunk and a strange French doctor (Ellie Poussot) who tries to close the deadly loop. There are a few comedy highlights (the teacher-father makes the most of the 65 minutes conceded by the time machine to play the lottery and win himself 30 million euros) and family complications to boot (the father has left his wife and son in London, withdrawing to the Italian countryside to carry out uncontrollable experiments), but the film is far from perfect and, well within 65 minutes of the movie’s running time, the viewer finds him/herself somewhat lost in the folds of time. But Ciro Sorrentino’s experiment (in the credits, he wanted to write "created by" instead of "directed by") is so worthy of our attention that its defects are somehow transformed into strengths. International audiences will enjoy the Italian spirit running through the story, which could otherwise be set anywhere in the world.

Produced by Pragma Production and RecDistrikt, Time Perspectives has experienced a particularly exciting time paradox itself: after touring numerous festivals all over the world, the movie has found itself a sales agent, Devilworks, who will be selling film rights to territories all over the world.

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(Translated from Italian)

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